Early Years Induction – Questions for Parents

Finding out key information from parents/carers in the induction process can provide you with great foundations for gathering the knowledge you need to make sound baseline judgements. As a child’s main carer, their opinions and observations are important and if you ask the right questions you can gather relevant and useful information to help you begin to from a picture about each child and also provide the right environment to help move their learning forward. 

We have put together a few questions that you can use either through conversations with parents/carers or if you prefer a more formal approach they can be put into a questionnaire. Pick and choose the ones you prefer and also add your own. 

Characteristics of Effective Learning

  • How inquisitive are they?
  • How far will they take a risk?
  • Do they pretend when they are playing? Please give a couple of examples
  • How easily distracted are they? 
  • Will they keep trying if they don’t succeed straight away or do they tend to give up?
  • How good are they at solving a problem? Please give an example if you can.

Personal  Social & Emotional Development

  • How do they respond to new people and new situations? 
  • How are they when you leave them?
  • How do they tell you how they are feeling?
  • Do they usually play on their own or do they prefer to play with others? 
  • Do they chat during their play and what sort of things do they say? 
  • How are they getting on with learning to share and take turns? 
  • How do they respond to rules or boundaries? 
  • What do they usually choose to play with?
  • Can they choose what to play with independently or do they need your help?

Communication & Language

  • Do they join in with any rhymes or songs – which ones? 
  • What is their favourite story/rhyme? 
  • Please give an example of instructions they can follow e.g. “Get your coat.”
  • Which, if any, of these question words can they answer ‘who’, ‘what’ or ‘where?’ Please give an example if you can.
  • How many words do they usually use to communicate? (single words, a few words, sentences) Please give an example if you can.

Physical Development

  • What does your child typically do at the park?
  • What do they do in a large open space? 
  • What do they do on play equipment? 
  • What do they do with a ball? 
  • What sort of marks do they make with drawing and writing tools? 

Independence skills

  • What do they use to feed themselves and to have a drink? 
  • Which clothes can they put on or take off?
  • How independent are they in toileting?